Mettler hopes new Msunduzi boss can be found by year-end

2010-09-24 00:00

AROUND this time last year, the Msunduzi Municipality was in the depth of its financial woes and questions were being raised about Rob Haswell’s competency as municipal manager.

Yesterday, it was announced that the city can expect a new municipal manager to be appointed before the year-end.

The announcment came via a report written by Msunduzi administrator Johann Mettler at yesterday’s sitting of the executive committee (Exco).

In his report, Mettler said that if the recruitment and selection process is concluded by the end of October, then the municipal manager can assume duties on either November or December 1.

But Mettler said the municipality may face a problem in its bid to attract applicants who are suitably qualified.

The reason is that it can only offer a fixed contract that carries a maximum term of 18 months instead of the standard maximum period of five years.

One reason for this, Mettler said, is that the Municipal Systems Act states that the municipal manager’s employment contract “must be for a fixed term of employment up to a maximum of five years, not exceeding a period of ending one year after the election of the next council of the municipality”.

He said that although the dates for the 2011 municipal elections have yet to be announced, it is thought that they will not be held later than April.

Because of the provision in the Act and the elections, he added, Msunduzi can only offer the municipal manager a maximum contract of 18 months.

Some of the core managerial and occupational competencies that applicants will be judged on include:

• Strategic leadership and capability;

• Knowledge of developmental local government;

• Competency in policy analysis, conceptualisation and implementation;

• Service delivery innovation; and

• Knowledge of South African and global political, economic and social contexts.

Said Mettler: “Although only the council can appoint the municipal manager, and in the absence of a policy guidline in Msunduzi, it is recommended that council delegates the recruitment and selection process of the municipal manager to the executive committee.”

He said Exco will then manage the recruitment and selection process and once they have been completed, a full recommendation will be made to council so that the appointment can be made official.

Mettler said attempts to canvass municipal officials or politicians for the post will result in that applicant’s immediate disqualification.


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